My Wilderness

32 Name of activity:

My Wilderness

Organization presenting this method:


A Number of

people reflecting:

XSolo (1 person) X Small group

(< 20 people)


 Large group

(> 20 people)


B The way(s) of sharing:
Verbal: x


Non-verbal:   Pictures /


  Text   Em­bodied  sculpture


  Other forms of expression


Digital:   Padlet


  Social media   Digital diary


C Place of reflection (where)   Indoors


X Out of doors   On-line


D The connection with guidelines:

What guidelines are you taking into consideration, while organizing your reflection?




Don´t direct content, direct process in order to co-create the reflective process.



Develop relationships based on trust, openness, empathy, honesty, dialogue and feed-back


Facilitate growth in awareness in learners, help them to “own” their learning,

In a personal and meaningful way.



Try to manage the paradox, involved in steering of an intrinsic learning process, ie to create a heightened reflective attention of learners.


Slow down and value moments of not-knowing, while progressively deepening your reflection questions.


Recall that reflection can never be imposed, only kindly invited.




Always consider reflection as a broad and deepening process, that should be holistic.



Be careful of how you assess reflection – if you assess it at all.

Inspiration for Reflection

Project reflect











Broader description of method or story of an actual practice


Goal of activity:


The goal is to recognize in oneself which driver behaviors or working styles make us act in a dysfunctional way and to find in oneself the resources to make an effort in behaving differently






The method has been used during a 4 day experiential learning training course on personal development called “My wilderness”. Participants, after receiving brief theoretical inputs of Berne’s transactional analysis and the driver behaviors, experience building a natural shelter and living in the wilderness for the entire duration of the course. The challenge for participants is to build the camp, light the fire camp and cook, besides having to deal with orienteering activities, river crossing and low ropes activities.

We have noticed that the wilderness accelerates individual and group processes, so the method can be used since the end of the first day.

The activities are run in the outdoors. Group members need to be given a proper time and space for structured “solo” moments during the day, where to reflect without disturbance on which moments they had acted under the impulse of driver behaviors. A diary or note book and pen/pencil is given beforehand when the course starts, so that participants can note down their insights, in the way they prefer (ex: writing, drawing etc).

Group members are then invited to sit in a circle around the fire and to share their findings and receive a feedback from the other participants to compare their subjective impression with what has been perceived by the other members of the group.

The topic requires a safe psychological environment, for this reason the size of the group shouldn’t be more than 10/12 people and the facilitator should ensure no disturbance coming from the outside. The facilitator should try to encourage everyone in the group to speak, by allowing a proper time for everyone and preventing eventual discussions.

The third and fourth day participants are invited to reflect in action with the support of the trainer, in order to recognize the actions led by their driver behaviors and to try out a different behavior.


Setting the reflective practice:

  1. Group members are invited to find themselves a place in the nature where to review the activities and tasks done until that very moment and to look inside themselves (30/40 minutes approximately. Time is necessary to get in touch with oneself.). People can either sit in a place they feel comfortable with or move according to what helps them concentrate and get in touch with themselves better)
  2. Each group member reports on the diary their driver behaviors and the moments when they felt this was dysfunctional, trying to name the emotion or physical sensation linked to it.
  3. Group members are invited to sit in the circle and share their insights with the others. One person at a time speaks and the others give feedback on what has been said, trying to be precise on the moment and action where they have noticed a certain driver behavior.
  4. The person receiving the feedback can ask the others questions for clarification
  5. The facilitator ensures that feedback doesn’t turn into a debate or a critique, as the aim of the activity is to gain awareness of one owns’ driver behaviors

Story from practice:

What we have noticed in our practice is that wilderness support the activation of new behaviors and above all facilitates being aware that one owns’ driver behaviors are not the most adequate and useful answers to a certain given context.
Timeframe: 1 ½ hour sitting around the fire place